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Metta World Peace thinks Luke Walton is going to be a Hall of Fame coach

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Los Angeles might have a special coach on their hands.

Dallas Mavericks v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The Los Angeles Lakers’ current five-game losing streak and 4-11 record over their last 15 games has killed much of the playoff hopes and optimism surrounding the team, but it’s still clear the front office made the right choice in who they hired as head coach over the offseason.

Luke Walton had the team off to a strong start before injuries and a tough road slate combined to derail them, which has become a habit for him. Walton also started 39-4 as interim head coach with the Golden State Warriors, and while none of those wins count on his resume, one of his players seems to think he won’t need them to be one of the best coaches in NBA history.

“Luke is going to be a Hall of Famer,” Metta World Peace told Mark Medina of the O.C. Register. “It’s kind of early. But I definitely see him going. It might be 40 years from now. But he’s going to be in there.”

First off, World Peace saying “it’s kind of early” to be discussing Walton’s Hall of Fame candidacy 25 games into his career is the understatement of the century.

That being said, the early returns on Walton as a head coach have mostly been good. He seems to have the right temperament to deal with a young, rebuilding team, and he’s also continued to speak about big picture goals whether the Lakers are winning or losing. He wants the team to play the right way, regardless of the result, and his players seem to have completely bought in and regularly echo his message during press availability.

Walton has also shown the talent for quickly teaching players a completely new offense where passing to players not named Kobe Bryant is encouraged, and just about the only issue he’s displayed thus far has been his hesitancy to mess with his rotations in the face of injuries.

Otherwise Walton has mostly done a solid all-around job. It’s too early to figure out whether or not he’s going to end up as one of the best coaches in NBA history, but he’s on the path to at least being a really good one.

Harrison Faigen is co-host of the Locked on Lakers podcast (subscribe here), and you can follow him on Twitter at @hmfaigen.